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Please begin with an informative title:

Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL-15) has, once again, embarrassed Downstate Illinois.

This time, in a House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee hearing, Shimkus attempted to compare dealing with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to dealing with the dictatorship of North Korea. However, Shimkus referred to the "Republic of Korea", which is the official name of South Korea, the U.S. ally on the Korean Peninsula. Shimkus then refused to allow Sebelius to answer his question after a Democratic member of the subcommittee objected.

Here's the video of Shimkus making a fool of himself and then refusing to allow Sebelius to answer his question:

As a progressive Democrat who lives in Congressman Shimkus's district, I will briefly explain the political geography of the Korean Peninsula.

First off, here's a map of the Korean Peninsula

Located between China and South Korea, on the northern part of the Korean Peninsula, is the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, commonly known as North Korea. North Korea's official name contains two misnomers, as it is not a democracy and the people have virtually no say in how their government is run. One could even argue that the "republic" in North Korea's official name is also a misnomer, since, although elections are held in North Korea, they're non-competitive since North Korea is a single-party communist state currently led by Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un.

Located south of the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) that runs from west to east across the Korean Peninsula is the Republic of Korea, commonly known as South Korea. South Korea is a U.S. ally and has a similar form of government to what the United States has, although there are many differences.

According to Republicans Sarah Palin and John Shimkus, we have to stand with our North Korean allies and it's difficult to deal with the South Korean dictatorship. Their geopolitical view of the Korean Penisula is completely backwards from reality.


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Originally posted to Aaron Camp on DailyKos on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 10:52 AM PST.

Also republished by Land of Lincoln Kos.

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